Go where the locals go in Colombia. Hire a modern travel agent with ViaHero.

Cartagena’s Best Restaurants: What to Know

Updated March 27, 2020

Rule number one? You can’t take a trip to Cartagena without embracing Colombia’s fantastic cuisine! Explore the highlights of Cartagena’s quaint cafes, hipster bars, and delicious street food—shoot us a message if you have any questions!

Want to make the most out of your trip? Tap into our network of local travel planners—Heroes—who build unique, locally-curated trip plans, designed just for you. Get started.

Table of Contents

Cartagena is home to Colombia’s best seafood

Seafood Best Restaurants in Cartagena

Besides beautiful beaches and fantastic nightlife, Cartagena’s coast is also home to prime fishing locations, making it one of the best places in Colombia for seafood.

  • Cartagena’s must-try dishes are cazuela de mariscos, a deliciously coconutty seafood casserole, and pargo frito, fried red snapper typically served with plantains and coconut rice. Stop by Marea by Rausch, a well-known seafood restaurant, for the best of both.
  • If you’re feeling adventurous, try ceviche from La Cevichería, a mix of fresh seafood, cooked to perfection with citrus.

Coffee lover? Cartagena is the place for you!

Coffee Best Restaurants in Cartagena

Colombian coffee is world-renowned, and Cartagena’s caffeine selection is no exception.

  • Cartagena’s Old Town is full of colorful colonial architecture and fantastic coffee—Cafe San Alberto is one of Cartagena’s best coffee shops, offering unique coffee tastings and boasting prime Colombian coffee beans.
  • Check out Cafe del Mural for a hipster-fabulous take on Cartagena’s traditional cafes.
  • If you’re drinking on a budget, grab a cup of traditional Colombian tinto, a thick cup of coffee made from local beans, while you explore Cartagena’s colorful streets.

Explore Getsemani’s hipster eateries

Getsemani Best Restaurants in Cartagena

There are tons of fantastic restaurants in Cartagena, but no trip is complete without a stop in Getsemani, one of Colombia’s hipster capitals.

  • Check out the trendy Demente, a unique bar known for its excellent tapas, to nosh on a light dinner before a night out on the town.
  • Di Silvio Trattoria, a famously delicious Italian eatery, is another Getsemani gems.
  • For a real hole-in-the-wall experience, you need to grab a bite at 923 Tapas & Vinos—its hipster charm, cool vibe, and delicious food are everything that makes Getsemani great.

Try the street food 

Street Food Best Restaurants in Cartagena

Getting to try Cartagena’s wide variety of delicious local dishes is sure to be a highlight of your trip to Colombia!

  • Cartagena is particularly known for its fritanga or fried food—usually a platter of meats, bread, and cheese.
  • Another popular street food is arepa, a masa patty, stuffed with meat, cheese, or (a Cartagena specialty) eggs.
  • Your local Colombian Hero can help you find the best street vendors, but many are located in Old Town or Getsemani.

Brunch it up

Brunch Best Restaurants in Cartagena

Did you really go to Cartagena if you didn’t do brunch Colombian-style?

  • Try Epoca Espresso Bar in lovely El Centro, known for its rich coffee and delicious breakfast. If you’re craving something sweet, try the chocolate con queso, a delicious mix of hot chocolate and rich white cheese.
  • For a more Colombian take on traditional brunch food, Cafe de la Mañana is a must-visit. Just remember—your local trip planner can point you to the best food in town!

Don’t you dare skip dessert

Dessert Best Restaurants in Cartagena

It’d be easy to fill up on all of Cartagena’s savory dishes, but you can’t forget to save room for dessert!

  • If your sweet tooth is flaring up, pop into Portal de los Dulces, a plaza just off Old Town’s main square with a wide selection of delicious handmade Colombian sweets.
  • If the Colombian heat gets to you, add a stop at La Paletteria, a quaint shop with fresh artisan popsicles, to your unique Cartagena itinerary!


Ready to jet down to Cartagena? We thought so. Have one of our Colombian locals plan your trip to perfection, or send us a message directly! And before your trip, make sure to check out:


Still have questions about travel to Colombia?
Why not ask someone who lives there? ViaHero connects you with a local to help plan your trip. They’ll create a guidebook based on your personal travel style.
You’ll see a unique side of a destination and travel independently—all while saving time and money in the planning process. Find a local today.

Looking for more info?